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Lord, Have Mercy

The U.S. delegation to the World Council of Churches apologizes for America.

11:00 PM, Feb 28, 2006 • By MARK D. TOOLEY
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AT A PRESS CONFERENCE AFTERWARDS, several of the U.S. representatives continued in the same vein. "The United States is increasingly being seen as a dangerous nation," said United Church of Christ President John Thomas. "To come to a World Council of Churches Assembly is to come to a place of accountability, and this letter is an act of accountability."

Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) President Sharon Watkins went further: "We benefit every day from the policies our government undertakes. As beneficiaries, we have to confess."

Some of the U.S. clerics admitted that they did not represent all U.S. churchgoers. "It is entirely possible that, in returning to the U.S., I will be subjected to criticism within my own church," acknowledged Fr. Kishkovsky. When asked if the clerics would share their letter with President Bush, he responded, "Experience has shown that the White House is not welcoming."

The anti-U.S. letter fits neatly with the WCC's theology, which claims that Western greed and capitalism, rather than human sin, are responsible for the world's sufferings. The empty European churches that fund the WCC (German churches along account for 40 percent of WCC membership income) may still buy into this '60s-era revolutionary-religious claptrap. But fortunately, most of the growing Global South churches, many of which still belong to the WCC, have moved on to something else and, hopefully, something better.

Mark D. Tooley directs the United Methodist committee at the Institute on Religion and Democracy.